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Here's a bill idea: Put down the gum

Gum1 I hope the real political writers on this blog will indulge me for a moment while I rant about a peeve that baffles me every time I'm in Tallahassee: Chewing gum.

The Capitol is a pretty spiffy place -- powerful, smart people are dressed to the nines, doing important business for the great state of Florida. But never, with the exception of airports, have I seen more egregious gum-snappers in one place.

Take the young lady at left, for example. Here I am, sitting in the House Policy and Budget Council, trying to listen to the debate. But all I can hear is her blowing bubbles and pulling them back into her mouth to pop. It's digusting. It's uncouth.

And it's not just her; gum-chewers like this are everywhere here.

Look, I understand that sitting in long legislative meetings can make one's breath a little funky, and that's bad for business for lobbyists, politicians and journalists alike. But come on, folks. Brush your teeth a little longer in the morning or drink water throughout the day.

And if you must chew, keep it quiet and keep it in your mouth. Please?